Old 06-18-2017, 02:03 PM   #1
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Default Composition (Balance) - Track Crew and Acela

I had taken the following shot of track workers in front of a passing Acela at the Trenton Transit Center back in March. Obviously, the lighting was less-than-optimal, but I thought the track crew made for an interesting element that differentiated it from an everyday scene.

The following submission was not rejected for an exposure issue, but rather composition/balance:


I know it's fully possible that this just ends up being one for the personal collection. However, I'd appreciate thoughts anybody might have on compensating for the composition issue. Even if this image can't be "saved," I know it could have value as a reference point with a different shot at a future date.

As you can see from the attachment, this image is a cropped version of the original. I can adjust the crop in any direction to help to compensate for the issue, except right, where a switch/signal box would start to intrude. My concern with adding more to the left would be a that I'm including more of a retaining wall in shadow that doesn't add much detail to the image.

Finally, as an aside, this image is a great reminder of how quickly things can change. A new switch box has been installed at the west end of the platform I shot this from, so it's no longer possible to capture such a scene from this vantage point.
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Old 06-18-2017, 03:10 PM   #2
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The only comments that I have are:
  1. It's a pretty heavy crop. Shot properly with appropriate settings, a high-res sensor and good glass, it should be no problem for a low-res application like RP....but I would normally try to stay away from cropping that heavily.
  2. With a little more elevation you would have been able to create some separation between the crew and the train. What you have is not terrible, but it is close to what I would call a "merge", meaning that the two central elements in the photo appear to "touch."

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Old 06-18-2017, 04:03 PM   #3
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Not 100% level to my eyes either (leaning right) and it's a bit noisy.
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Old 06-18-2017, 08:48 PM   #4
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The biggest problem I have is the color. The combination of low sun and the reflective vests produces a very unpleasant palette, at least to my eyes. There also seems to be some haloing from the high contrast. For what you were trying to do, I think the crop/ composition is OK but a bit wider would probably be better, but the gaggle of MOW folks standing around is really not all that interesting. I probably would have rejected it for poor image quality with a PAQ in the back of my mind.
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Last edited by John West; 06-18-2017 at 08:51 PM.
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:57 PM   #5
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Besides content and composition this is a severe crop of a crop sensor, 226mm equivalent, not up on the type of Olympus camera but 113mm focal length to 226, and then at 800 ISO it expecting a lot for the image quality to hold up and I don't think it does. So like John says, PIQ.


Of course as soon as I say something your chances improve.

Last edited by RobJor; 06-19-2017 at 12:15 AM.
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Old 06-23-2017, 12:52 PM   #6
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Thanks to each of you for your input. I'll let this one sit in the personal collection and keep your insights in mind with future shots.
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